8 Toronto Locals Tell Us Where to Reset, De-stress and Chill Out

Motivational quotes on Instagram glorify the nonstop hustle and grind, but in real life we all need a timeout now and then.

When we stopped by the latest session of The Creator Class @reset.series with Toronto trainer extraordinaire Eva Redpath—a monthly workout plus a speaker round table—the theme was [Re]pair: calming the mind, resting the body and finding life balance. (The next class, [Re]plenish with Eva Redpath, is all about nutrition and will take place May 12.)

Post-talk, we asked Redpath and her special guests where they personally go to chill out in the city. Here’s their hit list of favourite places in Toronto.

Eva Redpath, Nike Master Trainer, women’s fitness leader and creator of Body Conditioning by Dancers

“I honour my body’s need for rest and recovery by prioritizing self-care. One of my favourites places to unplug is Float.”

Float Toronto (1159 Queen Street West) offers sensory deprivation tanks, where you can lie in a pod filled with Epsom salt water and just, well, float. 

Emily Thring, founder of The Quiet Company, which hosts meditation classes

“I chill out through movement. I practice Pilates at the Mindful Movement Centre in Yorkville. It’s just a very serene space. And the instructors are amazing.”

Mindful Movement Centre (68 Scollard Street, Suite 301) is a bright, airy Pilates and yoga studio specializing in small classes.

Martin Reader, 2012 Olympian, volleyball player and Nike trainer

“Mine is Impact Kitchen. It’s a great spot on the east side of King Street. It has a SoCal surfer vibe. Unbelievable food. It’s beautiful. And they have a great bone broth.”

Impact Kitchen (573 King Street East) is a whole-foods casual café and smoothie bar in Corktown. 

Roy Chan, personal trainer

“My favourite place is not work-related. Rasa is a restaurant near Harbord where I go to turn off. Everything I do all day is about work, and this is about eating, music and a couple of cocktails.”

Rasa (196 Robert Street) was created by the food truck chefs The Food Dudes. 

Julia Hamer, neuroscience researcher at St. Michael’s Hospital, U of T lecturer and former pro athlete

“I hang out at BrainStation. Quantum Coffee is attached to it, so I’ll grab a nice cappuccino and a croissant. It’s a really good workspace. Yes, I work when I chill out. But I do read papers not directly related to my own research!”

BrainStation (460 King Street West) is a digital education centre. 

Derek McCarty, creative director at Dosist, a cannabis-based wellness company

“One of my favourite places to chill out, hang out and relax is Tokyo Smoke. I love it. They’ve done an amazing job building a community.”

Tokyo Smoke is a coffee shop and cannabis accessories retailer, with five locations in Toronto. 

DJ Feel Good Smalls

“Casa Loma is my chill spot. It reminds me of London, with its old architecture. I usually listen to a full album when I am chilling out. It helps with easing my mind and taking me on a musical journey. Right now, one of my go-to albums is Charlotte Day Wilson’s Stone Woman.”

Casa Loma (1 Austin Terrace) is a Gothic Revival castle built in 1914. 

Akil Augustine, producer and host for MLSE’s NBA TV Canada

“Riverdale Park is the greatest spot in the city. I get a big bottle of water, a big beach towel, a football, a book, whatever. I will get there as early as I can and soak in that sunset. It’s a great view. And it’s a big-ass park. People are there with their dogs. There’s a pool. People do their boot camps. You can just people watch.”

Riverdale Park East (550 Broadview Avenue) is an 18-hectare green space popular for its sports fields, running track and view of the downtown skyline.